[EPUB] The Anarchy by William Dalrymple

Inside this e-book

On 24 September 1599, while William Shakespeare was pondering a draft of Hamlet in his house downriver from the Globe in Southwark, a mile to the north, barely twenty minutes’ walk across the Thames, a motley group of Londoners was gathering in a rambling, half-timbered building lit by many-mullioned Tudor windows.1

Even at the time, the meeting was recognized as historic, and notaries were present with ink and quill to keep a record of the unusually diverse cross-section of Elizabethan London that came that day to the Founders’ Hall, off Moorgate Fields.2 At the top of the social scale, hung with his golden chain of office, there was the stout figure of the Lord Mayor himself, Sir Stephen Soame, robed in scarlet fustian. He was accompanied by two of his predecessors in office and several senior Aldermen of the City – buttery Elizabethan burghers, their white-bearded faces nestling in a feathery tangle of cambric ruffs.3

The most powerful of these was the gravely goateed, ermine-trimmed and stovepipe-hatted figure of Sir Thomas Smythe, Auditor of the City of London, who had made a fortune importing currants from the Greek islands and spices from Aleppo. A few years earlier ‘Auditor Smythe’ had helped form the Levant Company as a vehicle for his trading voyages; this meeting was his initiative

[EPUB] The Anarchy by William Dalrymple Overview

Gloriously opulent … India is a sumptuous place. Telling its story properly demands lush language, not to mention sensitivity towards the country’s passionate complexity. Dalrymple is a superb historian with a visceral understanding of India … A book of beauty * The Times * An energetic pageturner that marches from the counting-house on to the battlefield, exploding patriotic myths along the way … Dalrymple’s spirited, detailed telling will be reason enough for many readers to devour The Anarchy. But his more novel and arguably greater achievement lies in the way he places the company’s rise in the turbulent political landscape of late Mughal India * Guardian *

The book’s real achievement is to take readers to an important and neglected period of British and South Asian history and to make their trip not just informative but colorful * Observer *.

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